Jaden is healing from his strabismus surgery with time, lots of love and lots of Star Wars.

These photos were taken yesterday morning very quickly in the morning light (through the drawn shades) as he is quite sensitive to light. We were snuggling in bed and he looked so beautiful to me so I asked his permission to take a few photos. No tripod (yet) so forgive the blurriness. This is how the world looks for him right now anyway when he finds the courage to open his eyes for a few minutes.

I'd like to thank everyone for all of their love and support through this ordeal.

He Writes?

Dad when you get out of your
meeting will you
call me?

Apparently Jaden writes now. He was missing his daddy around 5 p.m. yesterday and wanted to leave a note on his desk at work. So I got him a paper and usually I spell each word he wants to say and he writes it one letter at a time. But not yesterday, he just picked up his pencil and whipped this out in a flash!

I volunteer on Thursdays in his class and his teacher that day is PT and a reading specialist. She only works one day in his class. From this experience, I know they are learning to put spaces between their words, initial caps and the letters in a word are close together. At Jaden's conference a few weeks ago, we came home with a boatload of books he has made in writer's workshop. Writer's workshop is where they take paper, stapler and pencils and make books. Kinders are expected to draw pictures, first graders must have words also. Clearly Jaden is an enthusiastic writer. I'll take a picture of his books later and post it.

Jeff and I are proud, can you tell? :)

Also I told Jaden I was going to post his note on my blog first thing this morning and he was amazed. He told one of Jeff's coworkers right when he walked in the door, he told Jeff and he told me he was going to tell all his classmates. "My mommy is going to put my note on her blog in the morning!" and then he added, "I'm not going to taunt them Mama though, I'll be kind."

Conquer the World

Jaden yesterday gleefully wielding his brand new sword.
Thank you Auntie!

I got 8 hours of sleep last night after I downloaded 335 pictures (a joint effort between me and Jeff from the past two days at Betty's). This is the one that stood out the most this morning for sharing because I can relate to Jaden when I look at it. I feel like I can conquer the world again instead of the other way around for a change.

Remind me of this tonight when I'm tempted to stay up too late.

On Remodeling

This summer, Jaden and I visited the Portland Children's Museum and the best part was the time we spent in The Garage -- a recycled art studio. I was so inspired by watching Jaden work there, I set out to create a smaller version at home in our actual garage.

Many weeks, lots of purging and a weak garage sale later, we were in business with some old & new craft and found items. Here are some pictures from Jaden's first day working in his "workshop," better late than never eh?

Later on, Daddy lent him his drill.

I love to take pictures from his vantage point.

Glorious Gobs of Gooey Glitter Glue

Here is his first creation!

I absolutely loved watching my boys hang out in the garage together: Jaden creating, Jeff working on his bike like the good old days. A few weeks after this, my instincts and hard work paid off.

I was busy doing something and it was one of those times Jaden needed to "find something to do." He got a glint in his eye as he remembered his workshop. He disappeared into the garage. I would check on him from time to time as covertly as possible. (Remember the spray paint incident? I wasn't taking any chances even though I had rearranged the garage pretty much to avoid any more incidents).

After a long while, Jaden returned to me.
With a big, proud voice he said,

"I did a little remodeling!"

And inside, with my own big, proud voice I said,
"Yes! Score one for me!"

17 Going on 70

Last night I was putting lotion on Jaden during his bedtime routine. Lavender lotion has been part of his bedtime routine since we created it when he was 4 months old. Usually it comes after his bath, but last night he skipped his bath and wondered why I was doing the lotion anyway. I explained that our noses and brains make very powerful memories together and smelling his lotion would help his brain realize it was bedtime. Then:

And it makes my skin soft!
Your skin is softer though.
I doubt it. Your skin is younger than mine so softer.
Yes I'm younger than you, you are at least SEVENTEEN years old!

I smiled and before I could reply, he shouts:


Yes, somewhere in that there range sweet boy of mine.

Lorem Ipsum

Well my grand-momma always used to say, "You learn something new every day" and as it turns out, my grand-momma was right! Or whoever coined that phrase!

Do you know about Lorem Ipsum?

Neither did I.

I saw it once upon a time when I registered Rosina Red and then opened iWeb on my laptop to try to make a site to go with the name. The template I chose had a bunch of Latin all over it. And that was the end of it.

Until tonight when Jeff came home from his Web Task Force meeting at Jaden's new school and we were discussing the K/1 websites that need to be created still. Somehow the conversation wound its way down this loosely documented path:

Jess: So Jaden's room's site used to be a .Mac site because it used iWeb.

Jeff: No I don't think so.

Jess: But it has Latin on it just like my site did in iWeb.

Jeff: Oh you mean Lorem Ipsum?

Jess: Yes!

Jeff: No, Lorem Ipsum is everywhere, it's a super common place holder for text. I have a Joomla test page on my Mac right now that I used a Lorem Ipsum generator on.

Jess: No you don't.

Jeff: Just Google it love.

{Jess immediately Googles and begins blogging all about how she must be the only person in the entire universe who doesn't know about it.}

Jess: Is this a web thing or does everyone know about this?

Jeff: I think it's a web thing.

Jess: Do you know that today in Target Jaden asked me if I knew Latin? What have you two been talking about lately that he would ask me that?

Jeff: Nothing, what did he say?

Jess: He said, "Mama, do you know Latin? I said, no. And he said all knowingly, "It's a language."

Twilight Zone!
Happy Latin Tuesday.

The Twins

Ella came to sleep over at Nana's for her first time on Friday and Jaden joined the party as soon as humanly possible. There was backyard swimming, an impromptu birthday party for the "twins" and a dinner party (all of this on Friday). The "twins" proceeded to celebrate several ages as they turned 6, 9, 11 and 12 all in the course of 48 hours and changed names two or three times too.

There was a date for Jaden's weary parents involving a lovely bottle of wine at a local restaurant, lost sleep for Nana, a fight or two, a trip to the beach and a visit to Oma's before it was finally time to say goodbye. This time with Ella was the happiest I've seen Jaden in about a month.

Hugging goodbye

I think it's true love.

Thanks for the visit Ella!
Come back again sooner than soon.

The Vanilla Moon Project

Jamie and I are proud to introduce a special joint blogging project about Vanilla Moon, a new cupcakery in our town. It opened last week and sold out of cupcakes almost entirely by the time we arrived. Today there were plenty and we arrived prepared with cameras, notebooks and little boys. We were ready to Cupcake.

The adorable business card.

Today's menu.

Jaden and I shared the Red Velvet.

Yeah Mr. Milk -- we got you.

All gone already?

The Review:

This was my first red velvet experience of any kind. Honestly I've been a bit fearful of the red, not so much the velvet. I am happy to report that the Red No. 40 has not killed me yet. ;) In fact, it was flavorless.

This cupcake was very moist. Did I think the dye would suck the juice right out or something? Hmm. Jaden has never eaten red food like this either. It didn't slow down the inhalation factor one iota.

The frosting was very, very light. Fluffy like a cloud. Not too sweet, which I really appreciated. Overall this was a very delicious cupcake! I was surprised how light and delicate it turned out to be. I guess I expected it to be dense, rich and too sweet.

Next week, I believe I will enforce my maternal powers and get the coconut. Sadly Jaden has taken after his father and informed me that he is "not too fond of coconut Mama."

Now I wonder what did Jamie try?

What did she see with her camera?

Father's Day Frittata

I made my very first frittata on Sunday.

They say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, right?

Actually I had a little sous chef who cracked six eggs for me, whipped them into shape and did a scissor chiffonade on my prosciutto too.

Before all the sous-chefery, we had to buy the eggs because we're spontaneous like that and passed the Belmont Farmers' Market on our way home where we bought farm fresh OJ.

It was all yum.

Even though I don't normally eat breakfast.

Three Things

This week has been full of deep conversations with Jaden, perhaps brought on by his big graduation into the real world. ;)

Who knows, it's pure Jaden though.
Here are three snippets to share.


Mama, what kind of person do you want to be?

What do you mean exactly?

I mean, what do you want to be in the world? As a worker?

Oh. I want to be doing creative things. I want to work in a big room with hardwood floors and a beautiful color on the walls and white shelves that hold pretty things and I want to create.

Oh! You want to be an artist like Jamie!


Well maybe she'll invite you to her studio sometimes and teach you how to do it.


Mama, I love you very, very much.

I love you very much too!

-- there is a long pause, and then a quiet voice --

I can't even explain in words how much I love you.

{my heart melts into a puddle that would consume an island}


Mama, there are three things I am good at.

I am good at snuggling.
I am a good artist.
And I am sweet.

These are the three things I am most proud of myself about.

{This conversation was just purely random over lunch this week. No lead-in whatsoever. In fact, we were quietly munching our carrots or apples or something like good little rabbits.}

PJCC Pool Party, 6.11.08

Jaden, thank you for sharing your beautiful soul with me every single day. You give me so much to think about, sometimes your questions are relentless but they are good questions! You give me the space to dream and challenge myself in my thinking through your conversations.

Like this week, thanks to you, I had the chance to verbalize a dream for myself with what kind of worker I want to be and to think about what three things am I most proud of myself about. Maybe I'll make my own list soon.

I love you cutie.

On Hybrids

In the car on the way to San Jose for the PET scan, yet another lively round of carspotting and discussion ensued between Jeff and Jaden. (I throw my opinions in randomly when necessary).

If I recall correctly, the appearance of a black BMW from Europe somehow sparked the following offering for automotive research & development. (My boys better forgive me for not remembering the exact model. Hmph).

I'm going to make a hybrid with flames!
Red and orange and green and blue FLAMES!
And it's going to be really, really long!
But not really long.
Not as long as the freeway.

-- Jaden

(Forgot to upload this last night, oops.)